Yet another Wreath!

I decided to keep my Valentine’s related creative juices flowing today.  As I’m sure many of you know, I gain a lot of my inspiration from reading other people’s blogs and seeing what kinds of projects are out there.  One trend that I have been seeing lately are yarn wreaths and felt flowers.  We all know what a sucker I am for wreaths, and after making some festive yarn balls yesterday, I knew I just had to give this one a whirl.  Take a look at what I came up with:

There are very few materials involved: wreath form, yarn, glue stick, felt, ribbon.  That’s it!  I was lucky and only had to purchase a wreath form, so once again my project cost less than a few dollars.  I love when that happens!

Wreath form, glue gun, glue sticks, yarn, and felt

Making the Wreath
Step 1: Tie the end of your yarn onto the styrofoam wreath.  I chose to start at the seam, but anywhere would be fine.

Tie on your yarn

Step 2:  Begin to wrap your yarn around the wreath.  This was an extremely time consuming process, because with each wrap you need to pass the ball of yarn through the middle.  For the first layer I chose to make mine pretty even and organized.

Keep wrapping…having Pandora running in the background doesn’t hurt either!

Step 3:  Continue wrapping the yarn all the way around the wreath.  This process will take a while, but is so rewarding in the end!  Here I am at the end of the first layer.

One layer of yarn

Step 4:  By the time you have successfully made it around your entire wreath form you can decide whether or not to do a second layer.  Because there were some gaps where I could still see green I decided that a second layer of yarn was pretty important.  For this layer I did however decide to go for a “messier” look, and did not try to keep all of my rows straight.

Second “messier” layer of yarn

Step 5: Once you have completed all of the wrapping that you want, tie off the yarn the same way you started.  I then took the extra minute to weave in the end so that it wasn’t sticking out, but since this will most likely be the back of your wreath it isn’t necessary.


Making the Flowers
Step 1Cut a circle out of your felt.  The bigger the circle, the bigger the flower.  I chose to make a straight circle, if you want your flower to have a more petal effect, then make the edges wavy.

The bigger the circle, the bigger the flower

Step 2:  Cut into your circle.  I cut in about half an inch and was pretty happy with how the flower turned out.

Begin to cut into your circle

Step 3:  Continue to cut in a spiral motion.  Do this until you reach the center of the circle.

Continue cutting in a spiral motion

Your end result should be one long strip

Step 4:  At this point start at an end, and begin to wrap the felt in a circle.  In order to keep the bottom flat, I found it helpful to have it on the table and rotate the felt.

Start at the end and begin to roll your felt into a circle, try to keep the bottom flat.

Step 5:  Continue to roll until you reach the end of your strip.

End of the strip…I used the pink bowl as a background color since my flower was blending in to the table top

Step 6:  Flip the flower over, add a small dot of hot glue, and attach the loose end.

Step 7:  Cut out a circle of felt, just a little bit smaller than the bottom of the flower.

After attaching the loose end, cut out a circle just smaller than the bottom of the flower

Step 8: Using the hot glue gun, attach the circle to the bottom of the flower.  This will help to keep each layer in place and your flower in a firm shape.

Attach the circle to the bottom of the flower.

Step 9:  Continue this process with as many colors and sizes as you like!

Attaching the Flowers
For my wreath, I decided that I would primarily stick to Valentine themed colors (pink and white) but at the last minute I decided to throw a blue flower in there for a little extra oomph.

The 4 flowers I picked out for my wreath

Step 1:  I arranged the flowers on my wreath so I had an idea of placement.  Then I attached the first flower with hot glue.  I held down for about 12 seconds, so that I knew the glue was not going to slide around anywhere.

After attaching the first flower

Step 2:  Attach the second flower in the same manner.

After attaching flower #2

Step 3:  Repeat step 1 and 2 for as many flowers as you decide you would like to attach

3 flowers later…

Complete

Step 4:  Once I had all of my flowers attached I took some green felt and cut out a couple small leaves.  I attached these with the glue gun as well.

I chose to add a couple green leaves

Step 5:  The last step is to decide how you would like to hang your wreath.  I decided to attach a small piece of ribbon and hang it from a hook.  I cut a small piece of ribbon and attached it to the back of the wreath with a couple thumb tacks.  Because the back of my wreath will be facing the wall, the tacks aren’t even visible, but you can always use glue.

Here is a final far away and up close look at my pretty little wreath:

I love how it looks up against the lime green walls of Sister #2’s bedroom.  I now have yet another wreath to add to my ever growing wreath repertoire…oh boy!

**Please click on my Linky Party tab at the top of my blog, or click here, to see some of the parties I participate in. Also check out all the other fabulous projects going on!**

Snowed In

ok ok ok ok ok.  I know that Christmas is long gone, I get it really.  And on that note I promise that today will be the LAST Christmas related post until next season.  But that still leaves today…so prepare yourself!

My snow day was pretty productive.  Neither of these projects are new, I’ve showcased them on here before, but I was just happy to finish up and be done with the holiday season crafts.  First up, I finished off another set of holiday coasters.  I’m loving not wasting the wrapping paper I had left over from gifts, and I think they came out looking pretty festive!

Father Christmas!

I also added a square of felt onto the back, to avoid scratching table tops or whatever other surface the coaster might be on.  I simply attached with my best friend, the glue gun.

Small square of felt gets glued to the back

Pretty little stack of coasters ready to go

I tied ’em up, and chose a thinner ribbon this time, to avoid covering the entire Santa face.  And now I just need to store them away for next year.  Only…346 days until Christmas next year!

The other day my mom popped into our neighborhood Walgreens and what do you know?  All holiday items majorly on sale!  You betcha.  Being the recipient of one of my ornament wreaths last year, she’s a big fan.  So she stocked up on a cart full of ornaments and came home bearing gifts.  Today I finally had the time to sit down and tackle gluing all the tops on to prep the ornaments for wreath making.  I really wasn’t kidding when I said the glue gun was my best friend…

174 ornaments later…and I was good to go.  Now don’t be fooled by the picture above, the majority are red, but there were some pops of color in there as well!

Blue, green, gold, and silver bulbs are hiding!

Some of these bulbs are glass, but I would highly recommend sticking to plastic or shatter proof ornaments.  Inevitably you will end up dropping one and breaking it, which is always a disappointment.  I only broke one, but still…go the plastic route!

One of the advantages to finally tackling this project helped with my New Years Resolution…less clutter!  This got 7, count them baby, 7(!) boxes of ornaments up and off of my floor!  Now that’s impressive.  Some of the glass ornaments had these dividers in the container:

I decided to save them because while a typical paint palette isn’t incredibly expensive, you can’t beat free!  For the next project I work on that needs a palette for dividing paint colors, I know just where to go looking!

Anyways, here’s a peak at the finished product!

All it’s lacking is a nice ribbon bow at the top…one day.

 I love how colorful and fun it looks!  Unfortunately I still have tons of ornaments left…looks like sometime in the near future I’ll have to make at least one more wreath, but we’ll see!  I know you all must think I’m crazy for still making holiday related projects when January is half over…but now is the time to do it!  Get all the materials after the holidays while they are ridiculously on sale, and then you will be super prepared for next year!  At least that’s what I tell myself…

I promise my next post will be something totally unrelated to Christmas.  I swear my ideas branch out a lot farther…

Off for another riveting, I’m sure, episode of Grey’s Anatomy.  And then…my 1 day work week!  How shall I ever survive?

Coasting right on through…

Something I discovered, only last year, was an elite little product called Mod Podge, and we’ve been having a casual love affair ever since.  I have not dared to branch out terribly far on my decoupage adventure, but I continue to see Mod Podge and I having a lasting relationship, which means bigger and better projects are surely on the horizon.

With Christmas ending I thought a great recycled use for all that wrapping paper would be some festive coasters.  Even if it means that I have to put them away until next year…but something as simple as this would be great for having around the house or giving as small gifts, perhaps a host gift for a holiday party you attend next year.  Never hurts to make in advance and then store for the next year!

All the supplies you need are tile coasters (16 cents a pop at home depot, beat that!), mod podge, decorative paper (I chose to recycle wrapping paper left over from the holidays, but you can use anything such as paper napkins, fabric, stickers, scraps of paper, etc.  Whatever you think looks visually appealing) a pencil, sponge brush, and some scissors.  I also like to keep a handy dandy art roller close at hand, but that is completely optional.

All the goods
My handy dandy art roller, I have found that it helps to remove wrinkles and bubbles

Step 1:  Decide what part of the paper looks most visually appealing, place the tile on top and trace around it with your pencil.  If any pencil gets transferred to the side of your tile, fret not, it easily wipes off.  The paper does not have to be the exact size of the tile, you can add small elements and have blank tile exposed, I chose to cover the whole surface.

Trace around the tile with a pencil

 Step 2:  Cut out the shape that you traced, line up with the tile and trim the edges so that the paper doesn’t over hang the sides.

Cut out squares of paper

Step 3:  Spread a very thin layer of Mod Podge on the tile

Spread a thin layer of Mod Podge to the tile

Step 4:  Carefully lay the paper down on the tile, make sure the edges match up, even out any wrinkles or bubbles.  This is where I use my trusty art roller, I feel like it really helps to even out the paper and avoid wrinkles or bubbles.  Be aware that the thinner the paper you use (ie: paper napkins) the more wrinkles you are likely to have.  But wrinkles aren’t the end of the world, they give your coasters character!

Lay down the paper over the layer of Mod Podge

Step 5:  The next step is to cover the paper with a generous layer of Mod Podge.  Make sure you get all the corners and edges, this will help seal the paper onto the tile.  Try to make even strokes, big globs of glue are more likely to dry white rather than clear, so try to evenly spread across the whole tile.

Cover in an even, but generous layer of Mod Podge

Step 6:  Your tile will look like it is covered in wet Elmer’s Glue, which is normal (and can actually be used as a substitute if you don’t have a bottle of Mod Podge lying around).  You now have to, impatiently, wait for the Mod Podge to dry.

Wet glue waiting to dry

Step 7:  Once the Mod Podge is sufficiently dry (usually 15-20 minutes) make another layer.  I’m usually happy with 2-3 layers but often times do each layer in alternating brush strokes to avoid streaks (first layer vertical, second layer horizontal).

Waiting for the second layer to dry…

Step 8:  This step is optional.  Once everything is completely dry, I recommend overnight to be on the safe side, I tend to use a spray on sealant.  This helps to preserve the paper and add an extra water proof layer (especially for coasters).  I like and would recommend Plaid, I have had a lot of success with their clear acrylic sealer.

Step 9:  The final step is to add something to the bottom of the tile so that it doesn’t scratch whatever surface you choose to put it on.  I have used furniture pads, felt, and cork.  You can come up with whatever method you like the best.  I enjoy felt because it is the least expensive way to cover the entire bottom, but I also like individual felt circles, which can be placed on the four corners.  Cork is a little more on the expensive side, but you can buy a roll of cork and cut it to individual sizes that will meet your needs.

Here is a peek at my finished products!

And here are a few other coasters I made last year, just to give you an idea of some other options:

Pretty coasters

As you can tell from the background of my photos, I completed this entire project from the comfort of my bed courtesy of my new “lap desk” (thanks mom and dad!).  This is not a route I would recommend, but just goes to show how simple it really is.  Some how in my mind I justified coming home from work nursing a migraine and a sore throat as warrant for an afternoon in bed.  It was bad enough for me to back out of the typical Thursday Grey’s Anatomy night with the girls…

Well I hope you liked my short trip down decoupage lane.  I urge you all to try it…it really is that simple, and rewarding!  Happy Thursday!

New Years Resolution:  Less stress, less clutter, less complication.  Today’s progress: EEEK, gotta get going on the less clutter part, stat!